Rocky rep 'rapt' to regain place in Qld men's team
INDOOR HOCKEY: Rockhampton's Jarrod Bass likens indoor hockey to a game of chess.
"It's less about skills and more about smarts. You're trying to outwit your opponent; it's how you work as a team and how you are technically as a player,” he explains.
"The pace of the game is a lot faster than outdoor, it's really intense. There is no time to switch off because the court's so small and your reaction time has to be double.
"I pride myself on having good basic skills and executing them to a high standard.”
The 25-year-old clearly did that at the 2017 men's open, under-21 and under-18 State Indoor Invitational in Brisbane.
He again caught the eye of selectors, and was named in the Queensland men's team to compete at the national indoor championships in Wollongong in January.
Fellow Rocky reps Tom Madden and Matthew Olive also got the nod, as did Jackson Willie in the under-21s and Kaleb Christensen in the under-18s.
Minka Elliott played her way into the open women's team, while Cassie Findlater was named in the under-21 women's team.
Bass was part of the same team two years ago, before he spent a year playing outdoor hockey in Scotland, and said he was stoked to regain his place.
"I'm rapt to be selected again. I thought they might have found some new combinations last year but obviously they were happy with what I had to offer,” he said.
"I'm only 25 but Queensland has a lot of talented young guys coming through, nipping at your heels and pushing you to be better.”
Bass says he's been playing hockey for as long as he can remember.
He made his first state team at age 11 and was a regular in maroon in both forms of the game through to his late teens.
He made a conscious decision to put his representative aspirations on hold while he pursued his plumbing apprenticeship, hopeful opportunities would present themselves once his career was established.
That proved the case for Bass, and one of the most exciting came last year when he headed overseas to play with the Dunfermline Carnegie Hockey Club in Scottish national competition.
Bass spent three months there initially and clearly impressed, invited back for a full season as player/coach.
"It was a great experience,” he said. "We played teams from Glasgow through to Edinburgh in the home and away competition.
"The team was going through a bit of a rebuilding phase. We finished fifth in the competition the first time I was there and the year I was there for the full season we finished third.
"The standard of hockey was pretty similar but the style of play was different. They play very defensively, whereas Australian teams are renowned for playing attacking hockey.”
Bass returned to Rockhampton in April and assumed the captaincy of Frenchville Rovers in the city's A-grade comp.
The team made the grand final for a second consecutive year, only to be beaten by Wanderers, who won an unprecedented 13 premierships in a row.
Bass was sidelined for nine weeks mid-season after breaking his collarbone.
"It's been an up and down season but it's finished on quite a high.
"Hockey's been a big part of my life.
"When I was younger a lot of my focus was on winning.
"As I've got older I've realised it's more about the friendships you make and the camaraderie you build.
"The guys from hockey are my best mates and the hockey community as a whole is like a family, no matter what club you play for.”